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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Psalms 67:1

 

 

God be gracious to us and bless us, And cause His face to shine upon us-- Selah.

Adam Clarke Commentary

God be merciful unto us - Show the Jewish people thy mercy, bless them in their bodies and souls and give a full evidence of thy approbation. This is nearly the same form of blessing as that used Numbers 6:25; (note), where see the notes.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/psalms-67.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

God be merciful unto us, and bless us - There is, perhaps (as Prof. Alexander suggests), an allusion, in the language used here, to the sacerdotal benediction in Numbers 6:24-26: “The Lord bless thee, and keep thee; the Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: the Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.” The prayer is that God would bestow upon his people the blessing implied in the form of benediction which he had directed the ministers of his religion to use. The first cry is, of course, for mercy or favor. The beginning of all blessings to mankind is the favor or mercy of God. There is no higher blessing than his favor; there is none that comes from him which should not be regarded as mercy.

And cause his face to shine upon us - Margin, With us. That is, among us. It is an invocation of his presence and favor. On the phrase “cause his face to shine,” see the notes at Psalm 4:6.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/psalms-67.html. 1870.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

PSALM 67

PROPHECY OF THE SALVATION OF THE GENTILES

SUPERSCRIPTION: FOR THE CHIEF MUSICIAN; ON STRINGED INSTRUMENTS.

A PSALM; A SONG.

This is another of the psalms designated in the superscriptions as both "A Psalm," and "A Song." We have noticed a definite universalism in all of them; and here, we have an unequivocal prophecy of the conversion of Gentiles. We are absolutely astounded that so many of the scholars we have consulted seem totally unaware of this.

Just note what is here stated:

God will cause his way to be known upon earth, his salvation among all nations (Psalms 67:2).

Let the peoples praise thee, O God; let all the peoples praise thee (Psalms 67:3). (peoples = Gentiles) (also Psalms 67:5).

Oh let the nations (Gentiles) be glad and sing for joy (Psalms 67:4).

Thou wilt judge the peoples (Gentiles) with equity (Psalms 67:4).

Thou wilt govern (or lead) the nations (Gentiles) upon earth (Psalms 67:4).

Let all the peoples (Gentiles) praise thee (Psalms 67:5).

And all the ends of the earth shall fear him (Psalms 67:7)."SIZE>

It would be impossible to write a more positive and dogmatic prophecy of the conversion of the Gentiles than we have right here. Every single verse in this little jewel of a psalm affirms it, the lone exception being Psalms 67:6, where it is stated that. "The earth has yielded its increase," but we do not believe that even that verse refers merely to a harvest. By metonymy, the earth in that verse stands for all the populations of mankind; and the meaning is that God shall eventually reap the pre-determined number of the redeemed from among all the sons of earth.

For these all-sufficient reasons, therefore, we reject the titles bestowed on this psalm such as: "Harvest Thanksgiving Song,"[1] "A Harvest Thanksgiving at the Feast of Tabernacles,"[2] "A Hymn of Thanksgiving,"[3] "A Harvest Thanksgiving,"[4] etc. Furthermore, a few, more acceptable titles have also been assigned, such as, "The Spreading Circle,"[5] "May the Peoples Praise thee, O God,"[6] or "Hope that the Nations will Praise the God of Israel."

However, this psalm is not merely the expression of "a hope" of Gentile acceptance of Israel's God, or a devout wish that the nations may also praise God, it is a dogmatic prophecy that:

God will judge the peoples with equity, and govern the nations upon the earth (Psalms 67:4).

Regarding the popular view that receives this psalm as some kind of a harvest song, Rawlinson noted that:

"The single expression (in Psalms 67:6) upon which this view is founded seems insufficient to support it, more especially as that expression may be well understood figuratively."[7]

In fact Psalms 67:6 demands the figurative interpretation which we assigned to it above.

In our search for a scholarly opinion with which we find full agreement, it finally was found in the introduction to this chapter by Matthew Henry.

Here is first a prayer for the conversion of the Gentiles and the bringing of them into the church. Then the psalmist is carried by the spirit of prophecy to foretell the glorious estate of the Christian church, in which Jews and Gentiles should unite in one flock.[8]

Psalms 67:1-7

"God be merciful unto us and bless us,

And cause his face to shine upon us; (Selah)

That thy way may be known upon earth,

Thy salvation among all nations.

Let the peoples praise thee, O God;

Let all the peoples praise thee.

O let the nations be glad and sing for joy;

For thou wilt judge the peoples with equity, and govern the nations upon earth. (Selah)

Let the peoples praise thee, O God;

Let all the peoples praise thee.

The earth hath yielded its increase:

God, even our God, will bless us.

God will bless us;

And all the ends of the earth shall fear him."

"God be merciful ... bless us ... cause his face to shine upon us, etc." (Psalms 67:1). As Addis noted, "This Psalm is an expansion of the Aaronic blessing of Numbers 6:24-26."[9]

This short psalm is further shortened in meaning by the verbatim repetition of Psalms 67:3 in Psalms 67:5.

There is not much we can add by way of interpretation to that which we have already stated above. This great prophecy of the reception of the Gentiles into the government of God, along with the Jews, is fully as clear and specific as those great Old Testament passages which the apostle Paul quoted in Romans 9-10, such as Hosea 1:10; 2:23; Isaiah 28:16; Deuteronomy 32:21; and Isaiah 65:1-2.

Despite such dogmatic, specific prophecies as this and many other passages of the Old Testament, racial Israel never seemed to catch on to the fact that God Almighty desired the salvation of any one else on earth except themselves.

In time the racial nation grew totally apart from the true "seed of Abraham," and viewed with the utmost contempt the whole Gentile world. No better illustration of this can be found than the example of Jonah, who preferred death itself to witnessing the conversion of Nineveh; and when it finally happened in spite of him, the attitude of Israel was such that he never dared to return to his native land, finally being buried in Nineveh.

This says in tones of thunder that his instrumentality in the conversion of Nineveh was sufficient grounds for his becoming thereby "persona non grata" forevermore in his native Israel. (See a full discussion of this in Vol. 1 of my minor prophets Series, pp. 341-352.)


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James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Bibliography
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/psalms-67.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

God be merciful unto us, and bless us,.... That is, God, of his unmerited mercy, of his rich grace and free favour, bless us with the coming of his Son, the promised seed, in whom all nations are to be blessed; and with the blessings of peace, pardon, and righteousness in him; all which with him spring from the tender mercy of God, the riches of his grace, and his great love; than which nothing could be more desirable to the Old Testament saints, who were shut up under the law, until faith came; and though children, they differed nothing from servants, being in a state and under a spirit of bondage: for the psalmist seems to represent the whole church under that dispensation: some understand the words as a prophecy, expressing the certainty of what would be; and, as the words may be rendered, "God will be merciful", or "gracious to usF11יחננו "miserebitur", Gejerus, Schmidt. , and he will bless us"; as he has promised to do;

and cause his face to shine upon us; that is, grant his gracious presence, and the discoveries of his love; that he would favour with communion with himself through Christ, and a greater knowledge of him in him; or that he would cause him, who is his face, his image, the brightness of his glory, to appear and shine forth; the great light, the sun of righteousness, and dayspring from on high, that was to arise and shine upon the people of God. The Targum is,

"and cause the splendour of his face to shine with us always;'

there seems to be some reference to the high priest's form of blessing in Numbers 6:24.

Selah; on this word; see Gill on Psalm 3:2.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/psalms-67.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

"To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm [or] Song." God be merciful unto us, and bless us; [and] a cause his face to shine upon us; Selah.

(a) That is, move our hearts with his Holy Spirit, that we may feel his favour toward us.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/psalms-67.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

Psalm 67:1-7. A prayer that, by God‘s blessing on His people, His salvation and praise may be extended over the earth.

cause his face to shine — show us favor (Numbers 6:24, Numbers 6:25; Psalm 31:16).


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/psalms-67.html. 1871-8.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

1God be merciful unto us, and bless us The psalm contains a prediction of Christ’s kingdom, under which the whole world was to be adopted into a privileged relationship with God; but the Psalmist begins by praying for the Divine blessing, particularly upon the Jews. They were the first-born, (Exodus 4:22,) and the blessing was to terminate upon them first, and then go out to all the surrounding nations. I have used the imperative mood throughout the psalm, as other translators have done, although the future tense, which is that employed in the Hebrew, would suit sufficiently well, and the passage might be understood as encouraging the minds of the Lord’s people to trust in the continuance and increase of the Divine favor. The words, however, are generally construed in the form of a prayer, and I merely threw out this as a suggestion. Speaking, as the Psalmist does, of those who belonged to the Church of God, and not of those who were without, it is noticeable that yet he traces all the blessings they received to God’s free favor; and from this we may learn, that so long as we are here, we owe our happiness, our success, and prosperity, entirely to the same cause. This being the case, how shall any think to anticipate his goodness by merits of their own? The light of God’s countenance may refer either to the sense of his love shed abroad in our hearts, or to the actual manifestation of it without, as, on the other hand, his face may be said to be clouded, when he strikes terrors into our conscience on account of our sins, or withdraws the outward marks of his favor.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/psalms-67.html. 1840-57.

Scofield's Reference Notes

Neginoth

Neginoth, stringed instruments.


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These files are considered public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available in the Online Bible Software Library.

Bibliography
Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Psalms 67:1". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/psalms-67.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Psalms 67:1 « To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm [or] Song. » God be merciful unto us, and bless us; [and] cause his face to shine upon us; Selah.

Ver. 1. God be merciful unto us] sc. In sending his Son, and calling his elect, both among Jews and Gentries, to the participation of that gift, John 4:10; that benefit, 1 Timothy 6:2.

And bless us] Specially with all spiritual blessings in heavenly things in Christ Jesus, Ephesians 1:3.

And cause his face to shine upon us] Giving us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ, 2 Corinthians 4:6, who is the brightness (or glittering refulgency, απαυγασμα) of his Father’s glory and the express image of his person, Hebrews 1:3, the dayspring from on high, Luke 1:78, Sereno suo vultu nos irradiet (Beza). In this prayer the psalmist plainly alludeth to that blessing pronounced upon the people by the high priest, Numbers 6:23-27, and showeth that all cometh from Christ, the true Aaron, the High Priest of the new covenant.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/psalms-67.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Psalms 67.

A prayer for the enlargement of God's kingdom, to the joy of the people, and to the increase of God's blessings.

To the chief musician on Neginoth, A Psalm or Song.

Title. שׁיר מזמור בנגינת למנצח lamnatseach bingiinoth mizmor shiir. We read, 2 Samuel 6:17-18 that when David had brought the ark to Jerusalem, he offered, burnt-offerings and peace-offerings, as promised in the foregoing psalm, Psalms 66:13. And as soon as he had offered them, he blessed the people in the name of the Lord: i.e. as Bishop Patrick supposes, he pronounced this psalm, wherein he manifestly imitates that form of blessing which the priests were appointed to use on solemn occasions, Numbers 6:24; Numbers 6:27. See Psalms 4:6.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/psalms-67.html. 1801-1803.

Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary

CONTENTS

The church rejoices in the love and favour of her Lord, and desires that the same blessings she enjoys in her beloved, may be the happy portion of both Jew and Gentile.

To the chief musician on Neginoth, A Psalm or Song.

Psalms 67:1

Is not this prayer an answer of faith to the blessed precept of Jehovah given to Aaron the high-priest? Numbers 6:22, etc. If we read this scripture with reference to this injunction, nothing can be more interesting, for then it becomes the exercise of faith on God's promises in Christ. It is as if the church with one voice should say, Hath the Lord Jehovah appointed our almighty Aaron to bless his people? Is Jesus still exercising this high-priestly office? Doth God our Father bless and keep his people? Doth God the Son make his face to shine upon us, and be gracious unto us? And doth God the Holy Ghost lift up his countenance upon us, and give us peace? Then, Lord, hear thy church while exercising faith in these promises, and do thou be merciful to us; and bless us, and do as thou hast said.


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Bibliography
Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/pmc/psalms-67.html. 1828.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

PSALM 67

THE ARGUMENT

This Psalm contains a prayer for the church of Israel, as also for the Gentile world, whose conversion he prophetically describes.

The church prayeth for the enlargement of the kingdom of God, Psalms 67:1,2, to the joy of the nations, Psalms 67:3-5; and for the increase of spiritual and temporal blessings, Psalms 67:6,7.

Unto us, thy people of Israel. As thou hast hid thy face and favour from us, so now do thou manifest it to us. For the phrase, Numbers 6:25,26 Psa 31:16.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/psalms-67.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

1. God be merciful unto us—An invocation, repeated in Psalms 67:6-7, and founded on the form of blessing by the high priest, Numbers 6:23-26


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/psalms-67.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Himself. This is the most difficult of all the psalms, (Calmet) crux ingeniorum. (Muis) --- The prodigies wrought by God in favour of his people, when they came out of Egypt, and conquered the land of Chanaan, are described by David in this triumphal canticle, which was sung when the ark was removed. (Houbigant) --- He had also in view the greater prodigies, which should attend Jesus Christ, and the propagation of the gospel. The latter explanation is also literal, (Berthier) and is given by the Fathers, (Calmet) on the authority of St. Paul, ver. 19., and Ephesians iv. 8. (Haydock)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/psalms-67.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Title. Psalm. Hebrew. mizmor. App-65.

Song. Hebrew. shir. App-65. Some codices, with Septuagint and Vulgate, add "of David".

God. Hebrew. Elohim. App-4.

merciful = favourable, or gracious.

Selah. Connecting the prayer (Psalms 67:1) with the object of it (Psalms 67:2). See App-66.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/psalms-67.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

God be merciful unto us, and bless us; and cause his face to shine upon us; Selah.

Psalms 67:1-7.-Prayer for God's mercy upon God's people, that so His way may be known to all nations; also that His righteous reign may come upon earth to the joy of the nations (Psalms 67:1-4); as the result of the praises of all peoples, the earth shall yield her increase, and God shall bless us (Psalms 67:5-7). 'Elohiym (Hebrew #430) is used throughout, as appropriate to the recognition of the God of the whole earth by all.

God be merciful unto us, and bless us; and cause his face to shine upon us - literally, 'with us;' implying His presence with us as our source of blessedness. The allusion is to the Mosaic blessing, Numbers 6:24-26 (cf. Psalms 4:6; Psalms 31:16). Accordingly the Psalmist here speaks of God, and not until the 2nd verse speaks to God. Compare also the manifold blessing, Deuteronomy 28:1-14.


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Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/psalms-67.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(1) This verse is an adaptation of the priestly benediction (Numbers 6:24-26).

Upon us.—Rather, with, or among us; a variation from the formal benediction.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/psalms-67.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

God be merciful unto us, and bless us; and cause his face to shine upon us; Selah.
A. M. cir. 3464. B.C. cir. 540. (Title.) Neginoth
4:1; 6:1; 76:1; *titles
God
Numbers 6:24-27; Deuteronomy 21:8; 2 Corinthians 13:14
bless us
28:9; Ephesians 1:3
cause
4:6; 31:16; 80:1-3,7,19; 119:135; 2 Corinthians 4:6
upon us
Heb. with us.

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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Psalms 67:1". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/psalms-67.html.

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